12 Most Popular Italian Songs – This Way To Italy (2023)

Do you want to learn about some of the most popular Italian songs? You’re in the right place.

Listening to Italian music is a wonderful way to become familiar with the country’s history and culture while also picking up useful linguistic and grammatical information.

While visiting Italy and immersing yourself in the culture is the best way to improve your Italian language skills, not everyone has the time, money, or opportunity to do so. However, if you want to learn Italian, you can also rely on alternative strategies. Listening and singing along to Italian songs is one of these.

As a powerful medium, music may be a game-changer when it comes to learning a foreign language. Neuroscientists have shown that listening to music has beneficial effects on a wide range of cognitive abilities, including imagination, focus, linguistic ability, and more.

12 Most Popular Italian Songs – This Way To Italy (1)

Recent studies have revealed that musical exposure facilitates and accelerates the acquisition of grammatical structures and vocabulary. According to this study, “listening to music may give us insights into how language sounds to us before we understand it.”

Aside from making learning a new language simpler, musical stimulation is also good for your memory and can boost your mood as well. (Source: Harvard Health Publishing)

Rhythm, pauses, tone, and melody are all shared characteristics between music and language. Singing also helps with speech and accent since it trains your vocal system to mimic sounds.

12 Most Popular Italian Songs – This Way To Italy (2)

This article will serve as a guide for several of the most important canzoni (songs). These popular Italian songs are considered classics of Italian music, as they have touched the lives of countless listeners throughout many generations.

1. Funiculì, Funiculà (Funicular Up, Funicular Down) – 1880

The name of this tune is probably unknown to most listeners, but many people will remember it from well-known films and ad campaigns.

Written by Luigi Denza in 1880 with lyrics by Peppino Turco, “Funiculi, Funiculà” is a popular Neapolitan song composed as a token of appreciation for the inaugural ride of the Mount Vesuvius funicular railway.

(Video) The Best Italian Songs of all Times

Together, Turco and Denza debuted it at that year’s Piedigrotta festival. Ricordi published the sheet music, and it quickly sold over a million copies. It has been frequently reworked and recorded after its initial release.

“Funiculi, Funiculà” has been widely covered and adapted into several forms since its initial release. It has been featured in various media, including movies, TV shows, video games, anime, and commercials.

Perhaps the most well-known rendition is the one sung by Luciano Pavarotti, one of the greatest Italian tenors of all time.

2. O Sole Mio (My Own Sunshine) – 1898

Even though it was first released in 1898, this song is still frequently performed as a praise to the wonderful nation of Italy.

With the characteristic optimism of the Neapolitan people, the popular Enrico Caruso version sings about the beauty of the sun after a heavy storm. The song has been reinterpreted by numerous performers and translated into many languages.

READ NOW: 10 Beautiful Italian Love Poems

Go to Naples and see the famed Mount Vesuvius honor this classic from the past. Read the lyrics and see why it’s one of the greatest Italian songs of all time.

3. Volare (Flying) – 1958

Although officially titled “Nel Blu Dipinto Di Blu” (“In the Blue-painted Blue [Sky]”), this 1958 hit by Domenico Modugno is known more commonly by its Italian translation, “Volare” (“Flying”). “Volare” is arguably the most well-known and frequently covered Italian song in history.

The first line of the song features the surreal image of a man going off in a flight of freedom, toward infinity, blending in with the color of the sky and the eyes of the woman he loves.

Domenico Modugno’s nearly “revolutionary” version of the song has propelled it to prominence, alongside the song’s enormous meaning. He sang it for the first time at the Sanremo Festival, and he shocked everyone by eschewing the conventionally static canons of the day and instead singing it while making casual hand motions, as if he were reciting the lyrics.

The legend of “Mister Volare,” as Modugno was known in the United States, began to grow from this point on, and he went on to serve as an inspiration to other vocalists throughout the 1950s and beyond.

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4. Quando, Quando, Quando (When, When, When) – 1962

The year of its release, this song became a big international success. “Quando, Quando, Quando” is also now available in Vietnamese, German, Portuguese, Spanish, and English, among other languages.

Multiple movies, including The Blues Brothers, After Hours, and Superman Returns, have featured this song. It is also featured in The Simpsons episode titled “The Real Housewives of Fat Tony.”

The song is a bossa nova/samba hybrid, with music written by Tony Renis and lyrics by Alberto Testa, both of whom have contributed to the careers of such musicians as Diana Ross, Lionel Richie, Julio Iglesias, and Andrea Bocelli.

5. La Cura (The Cure) – 1968

Released in 1968, this track is without a doubt stunning. The Italian composer Franco Battiato’s “La Cura,” also known as “The Cure,” is a masterwork known for its soaring choruses and harmonies that sing of unconditional and universal love. He is a well-known Sicilian musician, director, and composer.

The kind of love that Battiato sings of here is unrivaled. The lyrical self addresses an unnamed “you” and pledges his allegiance, promising to shield the other from the “paure delle ipocondrie,” or “fears of hypochondria,” as well as life’s other hardships, inequities, pitfalls, and fixations. He’ll look out for them, arming them against both external threats and the more lethal threat of their internal fears.

READ NOW: Simple Introductions and 15 Ways to Say Nice to Meet You in Italian

6. Parole, Parole (Words, Words) – 1972

In 1973, the song was translated into French by the duo Alain Delon and Dalida and became a worldwide hit, even being performed by Céline Dion. The original interpretation was by Mina and Alberto Lupo.

As the female singer mourns the end of their relationship, the male singer constantly flatters her, even though he knows it isn’t true. She dismisses his flattery of her as parole – “empty words.”

Different editions have been written in a wide variety of languages, including English, German, Dutch, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Greek, Croatian, Hungarian, Slovenian, Turkish, Chinese, Japanese, and Vietnamese. However, this remains among the best Italian songs ever made.

7. Ti Amo (I Love You) – 1977

(Video) Dean Martin - That's Amore

This 1977 classic by Umberto Tozzi earned him a win at the Festivalbar. One of the biggest international hits for Italian artists, “Ti Amo” topped the charts all over the world.

READ MORE: Ways To Say I LOVE YOU in Italian

This song, originally released in 1977, has become a timeless hymn – beloved by listeners of all ages. Umberto Tozzi gives a stunning performance of an Italian love ballad that does justice to the words.

Ti Amo” may mean “I love you” in English, but the lyrical aspect of the words and music is undeniable, and it causes everyone’s heart to race.

Dalida of France did a cover, but Umberto Tozzi himself did a rendition in 2002 with the vocalist Lena Ka that used Molière’s language.

Today, “Ti Amo” (only the words, not the song itself) is occasionally used in romantic movies during scenes where a character declares his/her love for the other person.

8. L’Italiano (The Italian Man) – 1981

The songwriter, Toto Cutugno, tells the archetype of the “genuine” Italian, demonstrating its qualities and quirks, in this 1983 song that serves as an actual manifesto of the Bel Paese.

The song starts with these lines: “Let me sing with my guitar in my hand, let me sing, I am an Italian man.” Despite Italy’s numerous imperfections, the artist insists he is yet pleased to call himself an Italian.

The lyrics continue with more images of authentic Italy, such as spaghetti al dente, a partisan as president (a nod to Sandro Pertini, President of the Italian Republic from 1978 to 1985), a canary in a window box, ristretto coffee, fresh socks in the top drawer, and the Italian flag at the dry cleaners.

9. Felicità (Happiness) – 1982

This song was first performed on the stage of the San Remo music festival, by one of the most well-known duos in the history of Italian music – Al Bano and Romina Power.

Felicità” was a commercial success, earning it a Golden Globe music award for its widespread popularity and high chart placement not only in Italy but across Europe as well.

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The lyrics of this song touch on such topics as infinity, bliss, the summer season, international peace, love, dreams, and music.

10. La Solitudine (The Loneliness) – 1993

This song by Laura Pausini expresses the heartbreak and isolation a young woman experiences after her boyfriend, Marco, is forcibly separated from her by his family and moved to live in another country.

La Solitudine” became a huge success in Italy, where it topped the country’s music charts. Success there led to its distribution across the rest of Europe, where it topped the charts in France, the Netherlands, and Belgium. The Spanish translation achieved great success on both the Spanish and American Billboard Latin song charts.

It has audio recordings in Greek, Dutch, Portuguese, English, and Filipino, as well as an English version.

11. Con Te Partirò (With You I Shall Leave) – 1995

Andrea Bocelli had the first public performance of this song at the Sanremo Music Festival. However, the song was not commercially successful in Italy and garnered very little broadcast on Italian radio. In some places, on the other hand, “Con Te Partirò” became a huge hit.

The record earned a triple gold sales award after topping the charts for a combined total of six weeks in France and Switzerland. It became the most successful song ever released in Belgium, spending a total of 12 weeks at the top of the charts there.

The song was re-recorded with Sarah Brightman singing it in a version that included some English lyrics. It went on to reach even greater success, topping the charts all across Europe.

12. Bella Ciao (from the Netflix series La Casa de Papel) – 2018

Bella Ciao” (English: “Goodbye Beautiful”) had become a cultural touchstone in recent years, embraced by people of all ages and popularized by today’s biggest movie and TV stars.

The Spanish TV show La Casa de Papel (Money Heist in English), which included the song as its theme song, is largely responsible for its global popularity. However, a very different story lies behind this title’s inception.

ALSO READ: 13 Best Italian Series on Netflix To Watch To Improve Your Italian

This Italian song’s origins can be traced back to the late 19th century, when mondina workers sang it in protest against the brutal working conditions in the rice paddy fields in Italy’s Po Valley.

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During World War II, the song was sung to honor the efforts of partisans and resistance members. Since then, this song has been sung in every corner of the globe, cementing its status as a truly international anthem, which is now universally recognized.

Artists like Giovanna Daffini and Manu Chao have graciously provided their own takes on the song, and they’re all fantastic.



What is the most requested Italian song? ›

Nel blu dipinto di blu” by Domenico Modugn is the most popular Italian song on this list. The song won third place in the Eurovision Song Contest held in 1958.

What are the Italian immigration songs? ›

The Italian-American Immigrant Song (1910-1940), Vol. 2
  • Core nun chiagnereAlfredo Bascetta, Traditional.
  • 'A tazza 'e cafeGiuseppe Capaldo, Giuseppe Milano.
  • Il SorrisoFrank Fazio, Traditional.
  • In aereoplanoTeresa De Matienzo, Traditional.
  • La bella ItaliaI Quattro Siciliani, Traditional.
  • La promessaFrank Fazio, Traditional.

What is the most streamed Italian song? ›

Turandot: “Nessun Dorma!” - Luciano Pavarotti

Pavarotti has 2,646,434 monthly listeners. Pavortti's rendition of the aria “Nessun Dorma!” is one of the greatest feats in the history of musical expression – and his most streamed song on Spotify, with 69,786,209 streams to date.

What is the Italian song that sounds like English? ›

Written by Italian singer Adriano Celentano 50 years ago this month, “Prisencolinensinainciusol” is a gibberish song. It aims to mimic what US English sounds like to a non-English speaker. (The song's title sounds like: “Preez-en-collie-en-sin-ine-chew-zol.”).

Which Italian singer is very famous? ›

Andrea Bocelli

Born in Lajatico, Italy, Andrea Bocelli is regarded as one of the greatest living singing talents. Labeled the world's most beloved tenor, Bocelli's life story is truly inspirational.

What's the stereotypical Italian song? ›

The "Tarantella Napoletana" is the tarantella associated with Naples. It is familiar to North American viewers of popular media as a quintessentially Italian musical riff or melody.

What is the Italian champion song? ›

"Un'estate italiana" (Italian, pronounced [uneˈstaːte itaˈljaːna]), "To be number one" (English) or "Un verano italiano" (Spanish; both meaning "An Italian summer") is the official song of the 1990 FIFA World Cup held in Italy. The song was composed by Giorgio Moroder with lyrics by Tom Whitlock.

What is the biggest international song? ›

According to Guinness World Records, Irving Berlin's "White Christmas" (1942) as performed by Bing Crosby is the best-selling single worldwide, with estimated sales of over 50 million copies.

What is the famous Italian protest song? ›

"Bella ciao" (Italian pronunciation: [ˈbɛlla ˈtʃaːo]; "Goodbye beautiful") is an Italian protest folk song from the late 19th century, originally sung by the mondina workers in protest against the harsh working conditions in the paddy fields of Northern Italy.

What Italian songs for first dance wedding? ›

A list of Italian songs for your wedding
  • O, sole mio.
  • Volare.
  • Funiculi-Funicula.
  • Tu vuò fa' l'Americano.
  • Tarantella Napoletana.
  • I Sing Ammore.
  • La Donna è Mobile.

What are the most popular songs in Italy right now? ›

Top Tracks in Italy
  • Caramelle (feat. ...
  • Rockabye (feat. ...
  • PamplonaFabri Fibra, Thegiornalisti.
  • No LieSean Paul, Dua Lipa.
  • StayZedd, Alessia Cara.
  • I'm the One (feat. Justin Bieber, Quavo, Chance the Rapper & Lil Wayne)DJ Khaled, Justin Bieber, Quavo, Chance the Rapper.
  • Sign of the TimesHarry Styles.
  • Galway GirlEd Sheeran.

What is the 1 streamed song ever? ›

"Blinding Lights" by the Weeknd (pictured) is the most-streamed song on Spotify, with over 3.5 billion streams.

What Italian song has no real English words? ›


What is the Italian pasta song? ›

'Buon appetito', by Enrico Montesano.

What is very loud in Italian music? ›

Forte (Italian: 'strong'). A dynamic instruction meaning the music should be played loudly. The instruction appears as either: 'f' loud; 'ff' fortissimo, meaning very loud; or 'fff' very loud.

What is Italian singing called? ›

Table of Contents. bel canto, (Italian: “beautiful singing”) style of operatic singing that originated in Italian singing of polyphonic (multipart) music and Italian courtly solo singing during the late 16th century and that was developed in Italian opera in the 17th, 18th, and early 19th centuries.

What Italian song sounds like taps? ›

The piece is frequently mistaken for the U.S. military bugle call “Taps.” At least I wasn't the only one. But wait, there's more. “Il Silenzio” has become a worldwide instrumental standard that has sold around 10 million copies.

Is Lady Gaga Italian? ›

Who Is Lady Gaga, And Where Did She Come From? Germanotta was born on March 28, 1986 into an Italian American family in New York City. She showed musical promise early on — she played piano from age 4 and went on to perform at open-mic nights.

Who is the most famous celebrity in Italy? ›

Italian Celebrities
  • Giacomo Agostini (TT-racer) Mario Andretti (auto-racer) ...
  • Giorgio Armani (fashion designer) ...
  • Roberto Benigni (actor/writer/director) ...
  • Sandro Botticelli (sculptor) ...
  • Christopher Columbus (explorer) ...
  • Alberto Tomba (skier) ...
  • Giuseppe Verdi (composer) ...
  • Leonardo de Vinci (artist/inventor)
Mar 26, 2019

Who were the three famous Italian singers? ›

The Three Tenors were an operatic singing trio, active during the 1990s and early 2000s, and termed as a supergroup (a title normally reserved for rock and pop groups) consisting of Italian Luciano Pavarotti and Spaniards Plácido Domingo and José Carreras.

What is the most Italian name? ›

The most common names are:
  • For males: Marco, Alessandro, Giuseppe, Flavio, Luca, Giovanni, Roberto, Andrea, Stefano, Angelo, Francesco, Mario, Luigi.
  • For females: Anna, Maria, Sara, Laura, Aurora, Valentina, Giulia, Rosa, Gianna, Giuseppina, Angela, Giovanna, Sofia, Stella.

What music is important from Italy? ›

Italian music has been one of the supreme expressions of that art in Europe: the Gregorian chant, the innovation of modern musical notation in the 11th century, the troubadour song, the madrigal, and the work of Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina and Claudio Monteverdi all form part of Italy's proud musical heritage, as ...

What is sweetly in Italian music? ›

The Italian musical term "dolce" (“sweet; sweetly”) is an indication to play in a tender, adoring manner; to play sweetly with a light touch. By itself, dolce may indicate a slow, gentle tempo.

What are Italian songs called? ›

Opera is integral to Italian musical culture, and has become a major segment of popular music.

What Italian singer made up an American song? ›

Conversation. Italian singer Adriano Celentano released a song in the 70s with nonsense lyrics meant to sound like American English, apparently to prove Italians would like any English song. It was a hit, and resulted in this: THE GREATEST VIDEO I HAVE EVER SEEN.

What is the Italian phrase for music? ›

1. Tempo
allegrettomoderately fast, slightly slower than allegro112-120
allegrissimovery fast, faster than allegro172-176
15 more rows

What are the top 10 most famous songs? ›

The Top 50 most iconic songs of all time
  • Smells Like Teen Spirit - Nirvana (1991)
  • Imagine - John Lennon (1971)
  • One - U2 (1992)
  • Billie Jean - Michael Jackson (1982)
  • Bohemian Rhapsody - Queen (1975)
  • Hey Jude - The Beatles (1968)
  • Like A Rolling Stone - Bob Dylan (1967)
  • I Can't Get No Satisfaction - Rolling Stones (1965)
Nov 23, 2022

What is the No 1 song for the longest? ›

In terms of a song's running length, "All Around the World" by Oasis (1998) at 9 minutes and 38 seconds is the longest song to reach No. 1. "What Do You Want?" by Adam Faith at 1 minute 35 seconds (1959) is the shortest.

What is the most downloaded song of all time? ›

Most Downloaded Songs Ever
  • Hum Tumhen Chahte Hain - From "Qurbani"Kanchan, Manhar, Anand.
  • Chhu Kar Mere Manko - From "Yaarana"Kishore Kumar.
  • Pyar Manga Hai Tumhi Se - From "College Girl"Kishore Kumar.
  • Hothon Se Chhu Lo Tum - From "Prem Geet"Jagjit Singh.

What song is American accent Italian? ›

Adriano Celentano released a song named 'Prisencolinensinainciusol' in 1972 and it was intended to sound like English being spoken with an American accent for Italians. It is often said that music transcends barriers of language and one doesn't need to understand the lyrics to enjoy a song.

What is Italy most known for? ›

When we say Italy, Pizza, Pasta and the famous Rome come to our mind. Italy is worldwide famous for its Art, culture, food, beautiful location, and architecture.

What song do they play on Liberation Day in Italy? ›

Every year on 25 April, Bella Ciao is sung across Italy to mark the Festa della Liberazione which marks the country's liberation from German occupation and fascist rule at the end of world war two.

What song do Italians walk down the aisle at a wedding? ›

Ave Maria. Ave Maria by the great Schubert, performed by the opera icon Luciano Pavarotti is one of the most perfect wedding processional songs.

What is the traditional Sicilian wedding song? ›

C'è la luna mezzo mare
"Luna mezz'o mare"
English titleMoon amid the sea
3 more rows

What is the Italian father daughter wedding song? ›

"La Donna è Mobile," Luciano Pavarotti

As a true nod to the arts, La Donna è Mobile is derived from Act 3 of Giuseppe Verdi's opera, Rigoletto. The story focuses on the love between a father and daughter, making it a beautiful and rich-in-history father-daughter dance song.

What is the most famous Italian old song? ›

Top 13 most popular Italian songs that everybody sings
  • #1 Funiculì funiculà (Funicular up, funicular down) – 1880. ...
  • #2 O sole mio (My own sunshine) – 1898. ...
  • #3 Tu vuò fa' l'Americano (You Want to Be American) – 1956. ...
  • #4 Volare, nel blu dipinto di blu (To fly, in the blue-painted blue [sky]) – 1958. ...
  • #7 Gloria – 1979.

Which TV Italian song Festival is the most renowned and popular? ›

Italians in general love music and Italy itself has a strong musical tradition. In this episode we will talk about a very famous Italian musical event: Sanremo.

What are the top 5 songs in the world right now? ›

Top Songs - Global
  • FlowersMiley Cyrus.
  • Ella Baila SolaEslabon Armado, Peso Pluma.
  • Kill BillSZA.
  • TQGKAROL G, Shakira.
  • La Bebe - RemixYng Lvcas, Peso Pluma.
  • BESOROSALÍA, Rauw Alejandro.
  • Search & RescueDrake.
  • Cupid - Twin Ver. FIFTY FIFTY.

What is the famous music in Italy? ›

Instrumental and vocal classical music is an iconic part of Italian identity, spanning experimental art music and international fusions to symphonic music and opera. Opera is integral to Italian musical culture, and has become a major segment of popular music.

What is the name of the Italian pizza song? ›


What is the name of the Italian cooking song? ›

The "Tarantella Napoletana" is the tarantella associated with Naples. It is familiar to North American viewers of popular media as a quintessentially Italian musical riff or melody.

What is the Italian song without real words? ›


What is the Italian job song? ›

"Getta Bloomin' Move On! (The Self Preservation Society)" was the closing theme of the film and was performed by members of the cast; the lyrics feature Cockney rhyming slang.

What is the Italian song from It's a Wonderful Life? ›

As they arrive, Martini and his family celebrate with the popular Neapolitan song "O Sole Mio" — "It's my sun that shines on your face." Soon, Giuseppe does well enough to open Martini's Bar and Restaurant; he's realized the American dream.

What do Italian people listen to? ›

Favorite music genres in Italy in 2019
CharacteristicShare of respondents
Italian pop61%
Dance/ house28%
2 more rows
May 20, 2021

What is pizza time song called? ›

"Funiculì, Funiculà" (IPA: [funikuˈli funikuˈla], English: "Funicular Up, Funicular Down") is a Neapolitan song composed in 1880 by Luigi Denza to lyrics by Peppino Turco.

What Italian song was used in Sopranos? ›

His signature song, “Con te partirò” (a hit in English as “Time to Say Goodbye”) plays three times in the episode, most strikingly while Carmella and Big Pussy's wife Angie Bonpensiero have dinner in Vesuvio. “That song worked emotionally without you understanding what [Bocelli] was saying.” said Chase.

What is pizza Naples called? ›

Neapolitan pizza, or pizza Napoletana, is a type of pizza that originated in Naples, Italy. This style of pizza is prepared with simple and fresh ingredients: a basic dough, raw tomatoes, fresh mozzarella cheese, fresh basil, and olive oil. No fancy toppings are allowed!


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